Southern Theater announces new Executive Director

The Southern Theater, which went through a shake-up in leadership back in July of 2008, has announced it’s hired Gary Peterson to be its new Executive Director, replacing interim Executive Director Steve Barberio. Patricia Speelman.

Peterson is probably best known for serving as the Executive Director of the James Sewell Ballet, but he’s also on the board of directors for Ananya Dance Theater, and has worked with the Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus. Peterson writes about the arts on his blog “Minnesota Mist.”

The unexplained firing of Jeff Bartlett from the position of Executive Director for the Southern created a rift between the board and the artists who regularly perform there, as well as longtime audience members. However efforts to be more transparent, and to include artists on the board, appear to have quelled the original bitterness.

Peterson assumes his new duties January 1, 2010.